The cost of relocating to Canada is higher than most immigrants expect it to be, say local advocates who recommend that newcomers have access to as much funding as possible upon initial arrival.
The government recommends that immigrants have at least $17,000 in savings upon arrival in Canada, but that figure is much too low according to immigrants and their community service providers.
Even if immigrants are able to secure a job, a bank account and accommodations before their arrival in Canada, there are still often unforeseen challenges to deal with, including unexpected costs of living and lack of credit in Canada. Relocation service providers say that many newcomers will hold onto property back home after their arrival in Canada, but are likely better off selling their assets and using them to establish themselves here.
Many government programs are in place to support newcomers in adjusting to life in Canada and building the necessary professional and language skills to ensure employment.
However, immigrants could benefit from more financial advice, including information on how to purchase a home or establish credit. Additionally, financial experts recommend that immigrants begin investing in RRSPs and RESPs as quickly as they can.
“For a lot of immigrants who come from overseas, one of the main reasons is to give their kids a better education, a better future,” says financial advisor Eric Liu, who immigrated to Canada over two decades ago. “If you don’t save for their education how can you achieve that goal?”
Source: Globe and Mail